On some boats , one can adjust their mast rake. Mast rake is how far forward or aft your mast is at its top. Mast rake is important, because it is a major component in the boat's balance and feel. If the mast rake is off, you may end up with your rudder always slightly turned just to maintain your boat's heading.
Many small-boat sailors don't realize the importance of using weight placement, sail trim, and boat trim to help steer their boat. They assume that the steering is accomplished with the rudder - that's what it's there for, right? However, smart sailors realize that their boat will go faster if they use their rudder less.
Tacking is slow. A tack will cost you 4 to 5 boat lengths of lost distance. However, a good roll tack will only cost you 2 to 3 boat lengths of lost distance. Which type of tack would you prefer? Before we start talking about how to perform a roll tack, you should first read Sailing without a Rudder.
Despite our best efforts to avoid breaking the rules, there are times when it happens. In the old days, if you broke a rule you were disqualified from the race. Thankfully, one is now usually able to exonerate themselves by making some penalty turns (how many depends on the situation).
Stopping and accelerating the boat? "Sheesh," you may say, "why would I want to stop the boat? Isn't the point to always go as fast as possible?" The answer is no. There are times when you'd like to slow your boat down, just like there are times that you'd like to accelerate and squirt away.
Many people have been lost overboard and successfully rescued, but there have been several people lost overboard who have never been recovered, or who had drowned by the time that they were recovered. Losing someone overboard can be one of the most dangerous and terrifying experiences that sailors will ever confront.
Anchoring securely isn't easy - it's tough to get things just right so that you can relax and worry less about your anchor won't dragging or you or others swinging into each other as the wind or current changes direction. As you enter the anchoring area, you first need to consider the bottom type so that you can select a proper anchor.
Compared to anchoring, mooring a boat is a snap. First find the correct mooring and note the direction that other boats are pointing in. This will tell you which direction to approach the mooring from. As you approach from several boatlengths down-current, time things so that your boat will be stopped at the mooring.